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Some Level 3 spells feel like a Missed Opportunity

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Fall from Heaven' started by WarKirby, Jan 11, 2009.

  1. WarKirby

    WarKirby Arty person

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    I'm thinking extra lv3 spells is far and away the best and simplest option here.

    Although I'm not so sure about the exclusivity. Why not have both lv3 spells ?

    Otherwise, it's going to lead to a bit more promotion work . Rather than Nature I, Nature II, Nature III, it would be Nature I, Nature II, Nature III - a, Nature III - b

    which just kind of seems wierd.
     
  2. Breunor

    Breunor Deity

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    Well, you may be right about that, but I think it would be preferable to make additional spells the central thrust of the thread to reach such a conclusion. I guess I felt that the thread was about that there was a 'problem' that a lot (perhaps half) of the third level spells were summons and that summons were wither underpowered or bland.

    I doubt too many people would object to more spells if they are balanced and helpful; this conclusion would probably be well received. But making them balanced and interesting is hard. Would additional spells upset the balance by making spellcasters too powerful? Would the Amurites now be overpowered? I'm sure people would like more of a lot of things, like units, events, new Civ's, leaders, religions, etc but getting everything right is hard in practice.

    The critical issue is whether the spell system has sufficient issues, either in balance or flavor, to make it a priority for development. I don't think there is consensus on this topic but of course I could be wrong.


    Best wishes,

    Breunor
     
  3. WarKirby

    WarKirby Arty person

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    I just had one more neat idea. An alternate lvIII Body Spell

    Strengthen (not really sure about the name)
    Would give all living units in the caster's tile, the Strong promotion. If a unit is Weak, then Weak will be removed instead, so two casts required to become strong.

    Limiting it to Living units, would prevent it from stepping on the toes of the Tower of Elements/Necromancy in regards to elementals and undead respectively, as well as preventing infinitely replicating water elementals/tar demons. IT would also keep with the theme of Body magic being a support sphere, rather than summoning as is the current lv3 is
     
  4. MagisterCultuum

    MagisterCultuum Great Sage

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    There is absolutely no difference between this and the secondary Body III spell I added to my version a week and a half ago. Even the name is the same, although in my case too I was thinking of changing that if I think of something better. (So far 6 spheres have 2 spells at level 3 in my version, and eventually they all will.)

    I don't think I'd mentioned this change yet though. Are you hacking into my computer to try to get my modmod early?
     
  5. hiphopin

    hiphopin Warlord

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    Well I thought it would be overpowered, but then I realised, archmages are SUPPOSED to be overpowered. They take a million turns to get to that level and can be killed by one shadow in the blink of an eye. So yeah, I agree with you.
     
  6. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Deity

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    I like summons, the Spectres are helping me a lot in my current game.
     
  7. WarKirby

    WarKirby Arty person

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    Cool.

    Noone is trying to take them away. Just add to them :goodjob:
     
  8. Psychic_Llamas

    Psychic_Llamas Wizard in the Making

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    i like summons too, but there are some major flaws in how the tier 3 magic is currently working and could be much better and balanced. making it 2 spells (1 summon 1 sorcery) at tier 3 is the best solution imho.
     
  9. solanacea

    solanacea Chieftain

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    I agree that there are a tad too many summons but I wouldn't like complicated spells that the AI could never use.
     
  10. someone67

    someone67 Warlord

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    This would be a good solution if we wouldn't have so many spell spheres.
    We would need 16 new spells . And don't forget that there are currently three spheres not implented because of the lack of ideas the team likes. By the way, does anyone have an idea for a mind summon?

    It's not that I don't like that idea, but it's difficult to design because of the huge amount of spell spheres.
     
  11. jwin

    jwin Warlord

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    Low power, high withdrawel rate, causes, or has a chance to cause, enraged upon combat. Wouldn't be effectiv against AI right now, since enraged doesn't seem to affect them.

    or

    Has an efective fear promotion that scatters stacks.

    or

    A permanant, immobile unit with command three. Leave it in an area, and enemies have to take their chances to kill it. Would be good for soaking up barbs in an unused corner of the map.
     
  12. MagisterCultuum

    MagisterCultuum Great Sage

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    I don't think that every sphere would need to have 1 summon and 1 sorcery type spell. Some could have 2 spells of roughly the same type. I was thinking that a spell that gave all nearby rival units Crazed would be a second Mind III spell.
     
  13. WarKirby

    WarKirby Arty person

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    I was thinking about mind Magic today, actually.

    It would be nice to have a Calm spell, to remove crazed/enraged as well as Burning Blood, and perhaps any other relevant things.

    As to a Mind summon... Maybe something that has Command I, II and III, causes fear, and has a reasonable retreat chance. But isn't really very strong. The idea being to terrify enemies into running away.
     
  14. WarKirby

    WarKirby Arty person

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    I bet the people on this board could pull together and come up with all the new spell ideas we need. A bit of creativity isn't hard, and there are plenty of niches left to fill.

    Law could really do with Unyielding Order as a spell.

    -------------------------------------

    Life could do with a powerful anti demon spell. Maybe something like...

    Holy Light (Range 1)
    Would do x% damage to all units within the radius who fit one or more of the following conditions, preferably with no damage cap, so it can kill an already weakened target:

    -Demon race
    -Undead promotion
    -Ashen Veil religion

    And would heal x% to all units within range that fit one or more of the following conditions

    -Angel race
    -Avatar race
    -Order religion
    -Empyrean religion
    ---------------------------------------------

    I was also thinking today, that Entropy magic seems to be missing something. It has a spell to destroy metal, and a spell to destroy living flesh, so how about a spell to destroy plants.

    Not sure about a name, maybe Kill Flora. Range 1

    All forests and jungles within the area would become dead forest/jungle, losing their output bonus, and their defense bonus. Or at least severely reducing the defence bonus, maybe to 10% . Maybe the burnt forest graphic could be used for it.

    All farms within the area of effect would be instantly destroyed, as if pillaged (but no money given). Same with plantations, fishing boats, whaling boats. Essentially all food based improvements. Maybe if it's a lv3 spell, it could be used to permanantly destroy food resources. Wheat, Rice, Sheep, Cows, fish etc.

    Oh, and it could instantly kill Treants, and any other future nature related summons.

    ------------------------------------------

    I have plenty more ideas where those came from. If ideas are the problem, discussion and sugestions are the solution.
     
  15. WarKirby

    WarKirby Arty person

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    Oh, and just one more idea. Entropy again.

    Corrupt
    an exact counterpoint to the life sphere's Sanctify. Would turn every tile within it's 1 range, into the appropriate hell terrain, including the resources contained therein. This would obey the current AC rules for the spread of Hell terrain, so you could only cast it inside the borders of an AV player until 25, etc..

    In addition, each tile that you corrupt, would have a small chance (15% or so) to increase the AC by 1. Since you'll get at most 9 tiles with it, it would hardly be a quick way to skyrocket the AC, but would give a nice little bonus.
     
  16. [to_xp]Gekko

    [to_xp]Gekko QCT junkie

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    I really like your kill flora suggestion. I actually proposed changing Wither so that it does basically what you said ( destroy enemy food output - destroying forests is a nice touch though ) in the FF forums.
     
  17. WarKirby

    WarKirby Arty person

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    Oh, and just one more thing to say.

    Just because there are 16 spell spheres, doesn't necessarily mean 16 new spells are needed.

    A requirment of making everything have the same number of spells is just unecessarily restricting for developers, and would stand in the way of improving single spell spheres here or there, as needed. The dwarves already get repair as well as enchanted blade, from Enchantment I, and nobody seems to be complaining about that.

    I don't think it's a problem if some spheres have more spells than others. Although I'm sure I can also come up with plenty of spell ideas to fill the blanks
     
  18. MagisterCultuum

    MagisterCultuum Great Sage

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    I really think that an anti-demon spell would fit better under Law than life. I'm thinking that changing Loyalty to Valor (and making the Valor promotion have a chance to wear off) and giving Law III both Unyielding Order and Banish (which, if not resisted, could instantly kill demon, undead, or AV units, or possibly make them cast escape and give the held promotion so they could not leave their capital city) would be best.


    I don't really see Life as being such a militant anti-demon type sphere. It is more a sphere of healing. Of course, the actual healing spells are covered my the Medic promotions that only Disciples have. Actually, it could be cool to leave Life spells as they are, but to allow units that know life magic to learn medic promotions.


    Holy Light seems more like a Sun spell. I see no reason why it should heal Avatars though (the only avatar in the game is an evil god), and it would make sense for it to be very bad for vampires.


    Your "kill flora" idea seems to me to be better implemented by bringing back the old Entropy II spell, Defile, which created fallout. As fallout is a feature, it would replace other features like forests, ancient forests, and jungles. While improvements wouldn't be destroyed the tile's yields would be decreased significantly (-3 to all yields, if we don't change it) so working them would often be useless. Presumably Sanctify would once again be able to remove fallout. Hmm...I just remembered that Fallout is used in a few scenarios now and has become an impassible feature. I wonder if this would mess things up too much. You could easily make it a different feature if that isn't how you want it to work.


    I'm thinking that spells that raise the plot counter could fit too, but those might be better as AV spells.



    Also, in my version I renamed Wither Enervation (as Sorcery Entropy III spell used to be called before it and the old Entropy I spell were merged) and made the spell remove the Courage, Valor, and Blessed promotions from units it hits in addition to doing the normal damage and giving out the Withered (renamed Enervated) promotion. This synergizes very well with an army made up mostly of demons, and it makes the Courage, Valor, and Bless spells more useful as you'll need to bring units capable of casting the spells along with you to restore the promotions to the units effected by Enervation.
     
  19. WarKirby

    WarKirby Arty person

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    enervation sounds awesome.

    One thing about the kill flora idea, is that I like the visual impact of leaving a visible dead forest in your wake, as your mage travels across your enemy's land. Spells aren't just about function.

    Replacing the forest with a giant yellow cloud, or with anything, for that matter, just wouldn't have the same effect. Although it sounds like a good solution for non forest tiles.
     
  20. Jules.lt

    Jules.lt Prince

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    I'll give it a shot too.
    Lots of stolen ideas, many that require tweaking, but it's a complete list that could probably be turned into balanced spells.

    Air (air elemental)
    - Flight for the caster.
    - Whirlwind that pushes all units within 1 tile ( but not on the caster's tile) 1 tile away. Can be resisted. Units in cities have +50% to resist but may be affected. Light units can't resist, heavy units can't be moved. Might make high/low strength affect resistance.

    Body (flesh golem)
    - strengthen: permanently adds "strong" (or removes "weak" if present) to units in stack

    Chaos (wonder)
    - summon a strong permanent unit that will turn barbarian (20% chance/turn). Stoneskin ogre? New thing? No affinity. Good for xp / strong but you have to use it fast.

    Death (Wraith/Lichdom)
    - no need for a new spell

    Earth (earth elemental) (This one I'm very unsure about)
    - petrify: 1 turn invulnerability for stack, but can't move or cast. Impassable?
    - entomb: makes target stack (picked a la pillar of flames) disappear for 3 turns. Can't be resisted, to make it much better than Sun2/Mind2?
    - Earthquake? Make high priests of Kilmorph do something else?
    - Destroy walls? Bring City defenses to zero.
    - Rain of stones? Damage walls, buildings, units, improvements.

    Enchantment (spellstaff )
    - Move Spellstaff to metamagic
    - Summon: permanent magic item (choice from a list: +4 att or +4 def or +2 both);
    - sorcery: permanent +1 strength? give mithril? 1 turn +2 strength to stack? 1 turn +1 enchantment affinity to stack?

    Enthropy (Wither)
    - Summon permanent black hole feature, graphics of the water thing. Entering is certain death. Units 1 tile away have -1 move and 25% chance to be swallowed each turn (only fast units have a chance). Several turns to cast. Swallows caster (and stack) as it appears (makes it harder to protect him while he casts). adds to the AC (10? you lose an archmage...)

    Fire (Fire elemental)
    - Meteor Swarm (summons 3 meteors)

    Ice (Snowfall)
    - Summon Blizzard, so you can have it where you want right now. One per caster and no more, of course.

    Law (Valor)
    - Move Valor to lvl 1, as a weakened version (10% chance to wear off per turn?)
    - Rally -> Bring surrounding allies to the caster tile, if the terrain allows it (you can't bring units on mountains/water/land if they don't belong)
    - A relatively weak permanent summon with no limit. Angel. No affinity. St of a champion (minus 1?), can use metal weapons, starts with demon slaying.

    Life (resurrect)
    - Summon spark of life: move 2, strength 1, cannot attack, flying, has "Heal" and "Destroy undead" spells. No affinity.

    Metamagic (Djinn)
    - spellstaff, in keeping with the "spellcasting support" theme.

    Mind (Dominate)
    - Big Scary Nightmare: St 8, 3 mind affinity, illusion, fear. Units immune to fear are immune to the mind damage.

    Nature (Vitalize)
    - Summon grabbing plant

    Shadow (Mistform)
    - Invisibility for the caster?

    Spirit (Trust)
    - Summon "Heroic Spirit" permanent unit that gives heroic strength/defense II to living units in stack. Destroys summoner on cast. St 8 affinity 1 Move 2?

    Sun (Aurealis)
    - Pillar of flames? Chalid can be given Sun 3 instead of a unique spell, or just keep it as is.

    Water (Water elemental)
    - Flood: temporary terraform into "flood" the caster tile and 1 tile range if they were land. Non-waterwalking units can move out but not move in. Impassable to water-only units too. Destroys all improvements. Needs a river/coast/lake nearby.
    - Tsunami. Make Cultists do something else?
     

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